The John E Jaqua Law Library is offering an exhibit about the history of marijuana. The free exhibit is open to all UO students, staff, faculty and community members.
The exhibit was put together by law reference librarians Kelly Reynolds, Jaye Barlous and others in the second part to a series about information destruction, manipulation and control.
The exhibit, titled “Reefer Madness: the Legal History of the Loco Weed,” takes a look at marijuana, its history and how the information about the drug has been manipulated throughout history.
It takes an in-depth look at marijuana and how information about the easily accessible drug has been manipulated to control individuals’ views on the topic.
Barlous said marijuana is a unique topic that branches out to various subjects.
“I think the history of marijuana presents a fascinating subject that crosses over all studies, from history to science to law to sociology and back again — it’s all there,” Barlous said.
The next exhibit in the series will look at information access and how it can be controlled. Through examples we can see that countries cut off access to information by shutting down the Internet so that outside sources cannot inquire information about current events happening within that given state. It will also look at how easily this happens in the U.S.
Reynolds, the pioneer of this exhibit, hopes that students will gain a great deal of knowledge through the exhibit.
“The message I’m trying to get across to students is that the way you counter that is through the critical thinking skills which you get no matter what your subject is in school,” Reynolds said. “You learn how to criticize, how to think, how to research, and law school is one of those areas that takes it one step further and teaches you how to challenge these problems and how to bring about change to the system.”
Diane Haas, the metadata services technician at the law library took part in the creation of this exhibit. She expresses her thoughts on the display and how the historical factors add to the disputed subject.
“Our thought for the display was to look at this current and often controversial topic, but provide a historical context for today’s legal battles over marijuana,” Haas said.
The exhibit will be running through December and is open to the public.